Ever get a super-terse email that was borderline insulting / insubordinate / rude? It might be the BlackBerry effect. That little keyboard is handy, yet not as efficient as your classic typewriter-style. It's just easier to send off a relatively terse message, sans capitals, punctuation, and lengthy prose. Here's a typical "old school" email that (in the past) I would consider quite short ...
Ed: Thanks for your comments; it all makes sense to me now. I'm out of questions at this time, so I'll sign the request and pass the forms along to Joe.
and here's the actual Blackberry email I sent ...
tx Ed all makes sense
no more qs, I will sign and move req on to Joe
Note the ee cummings / don marquis style of no caps, I'll only make the effort when it's someone's name. Also, my IM-experience is coming through with with abbreviations; I have noticed that I cannot send messages like that to non-technical managers and executives, even if they are on Blackberries (and they all are). I also like to insert the CR's so it all fits nicely on a single screen (fie on word wrap!).
I've learned that with most executives, this style of communication is effective, although only if they too are using Blackberry - because they can empathize with the thumb cramps. If you are communicating via "old fashioned" email, this post does a pretty good job of laying out some ground rules for short yet effective messages.